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Bowl of vegan tsos with chop sticks

Vegan General Tso’s Chicken

  • Author: Liz Madsen
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 cups 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


This sweet and spicy Vegan General Tso’s Chicken is a delicious veganized Chinese takeout inspired dish. Gluten-free and packed with flavor!


Units Scale

Vegan Chicken

  • 8 oz soy curls (see note 1 for substitutions)
  • 1 3/4 cups vegetable broth or water
  • 8 oz broccolini or broccoli, cut in 1” pieces (see note 2)
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, sliced, optional (see note 3)
  • Cooked rice, green onions and sesame seeds, for serving

Vegan General Tso’s Sauce

  • 1-2 tbsp fresh grated ginger, to taste (see note 4)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced or grated
  • 1/2 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/2 cup reduced sodium soy sauce (use GF tamari or No-Soy if needed)
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • 2 tbsp hoisin (use gluten-free if needed) (see note 5)
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tbsp arrowroot powder or cornstarch


  1. Note about veggies: I like to saute the vegetables first and then add them back in at the end, that way they have a nice texture to them and don’t get too mushy with everything else--but feel free to cook the vegetables as you please.
  2. Cook veggies: In a large nonstick pot over medium high heat, add the sliced garlic if using, cook 1-3 minutes until fragrant and translucent, adding water or broth as needed (of course you may cook with oil if you prefer). Then add your veggies. For me, I sauteed the broccolini for about 5 minutes but NOT the red bell pepper because I prefer my red bell peppers crunchy, not soft. I put a lid on for part of those 5 minutes to give the broccolini a little steaming action. Cook according to your preferences. Either way, take your cooked veggies out of the pot and place them in a bowl and cover either with a small plate or aluminum foil.
  3. Rehydrate soy curls if using: While your veggies are cooking, rehydrate the soy curls by placing them in a medium bowl and adding vegetable broth or water just so the top soy curls are floating just a little, for me, about 1 ¾ cups broth for 8 oz soy curls. It should absorb all the water in about 6-8 minutes, but if it doesn’t, drain off the water well before cooking them.
  4. Saute garlic and ginger: Saute the minced or grated ginger and garlic next over medium high heat for about 1-2 minutes or until fragrant in your large nonstick pot. Remember to add just a little water or broth to keep them from sticking.
  5. Brown soy curls: Now, add the (drained if needed) soy curls to your pot and turn up the heat to high. Cook them for about 5-7 minutes, stirring only occasionally. You want to get a little brown color on the soy curls.
  6. Add sauce ingredients: Now add your other sauce ingredients to a small bowl or measuring cup: rice vinegar, soy sauce / GF tamari / No Soy, hoisin sauce, coconut sugar, smoked paprika, and red pepper flakes. Whisk until combined and pour into the pot. Stir well and bring to a high simmer. This only took about a minute for me.
  7. Thicken: In a small bowl or jar, whisk together the water and arrowroot powder or cornstarch until it’s a smooth slurry. Pour it into the pot and stir in well. It will thicken within 30-60 seconds. You can continue to cook it on medium if you’d like to cook down the sauce even further, but I didn’t need to as it was quite thick and sticky. 
  8. Add back veggies: Now add the vegetables back in to get them hot again and covered in the sauce, about 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat.
  9. Serve: Serve with cooked rice if desired and top with green onions, sesame seeds, and more red pepper flakes if you wish. Enjoy!
  10. Store: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5 days or freeze in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months.


  • Note 1: Soy curls are just amazing. All you have to do is rehydrate them in a little broth or water and you can use them in soups, curries, you-name-it. Substitutes for soy curls include extra firm (or pressed firm) tofu, seitan chicken chunks, chickpeas, or prepared vegan chicken pieces.
  • Note 2: I like to include a couple veggies for some crunch, color, and extra nutrients. I used baby broccoli / broccolini and red bell peppers here, but you could use regular broccoli, cauliflower, green beans, mushrooms, matchstick cut carrots (so they cook fast enough), etc.
  • Note 3: I cut the garlic two different ways in this recipe because I LOVE garlic. I sliced some to saute with my vegetables and minced the rest for my sauce. If you’re not as big of a fan of garlic, just use the minced or grated garlic in your sauce.
  • Note 4: I highly recommend fresh or jarred grated ginger for this recipe for the flavor profile, but you can use ground ginger in a pinch.
  • Note 5: If you can’t find hoisin, you could add just a little bit of peanut butter (or sunflower seed butter), and a little splash of more vinegar and soy sauce or GF tamari.
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: American, Chinese

Keywords: Vegan general tso's chicken, vegan take out, vegan take away